Tokyo 2020 are aiming to use the Games to showcase a "new" Japan ©Getty Images

Fulfilling a Games vision and engaging the youth of Japan and the entire world was the focus of a first meeting of the Tokyo 2020 Culture and Education Commission today.

Using the Olympics and Paralympics to showcase a "new Japan" was hailed as a key aim throughout the capital city's successful bid process, and much of the responsibility for realising this goes to the Commission, headed by Tokyo University of the Arts President Ryohei Miyata.

The 28-member panel, which contains representatives spanning a number of different cultural sectors, joined with Organising Committee President Yoshiro Mori and chief executive Toshiro Muto for the inaugural meeting.

Members include Kabuki actor Ebizo Ichikawa, ballet dancer Kumi Koyama, fashion designer Junko Koshino,  tea ceremony master Sen Sōshitsu, Michelin three-star chef Yoshihiro Murata and award-winning film director Takashi Yamazaki.

Utilising what has been done during previous Games will be key, and they will therefore benefit from the experience of panel member Sarah Marie Cummings, President of Japan-based cultural institute Bunkajigyobu Company who also served as assistant attaché for the British team at the Nagano 1998 Winter Games. 

Sarah Marie Cummings will utilise her Olympic experience on the Tokyo 2020 Panel ©Shugo Takemi/Tokyo 2020
Sarah Marie Cummings will utilise her Olympic experience on the Tokyo 2020 Panel ©Shugo Takemi/Tokyo 2020

“The Tokyo 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games will attract more international visitors, and Japan’s unique culture will keep them coming back," Cummings said afterwards.

“There is a Japanese saying which translates roughly as ‘For each chance meeting, there is a fortunate future'.

"I would like to turn it into ‘For each Games, there is a fortunate future'.

“This fortunate future would see the 2020 Games igniting a connection between the people of Japan and all over the world, and foster cultural exchanges.”

In a general sense, the next major test for organisers will come next month on June 30 when the International Olympic Committee begins its latest Coordination Commission inspection.

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